PDA

View Full Version : UMD to use higher-level spell than you can usually cast?



Scorpions__
2010-04-10, 09:06 PM
Is this possible? With a high enough Use Magic Device check could a character use a spell that's of higher level than they can usually use? (e.g a 3rd-level bard using a 6th-level spell off a scroll?)

What about writing a spell into your spell/prayerbook that's higher-level than you can cast?





DM[F]R

Touchy
2010-04-10, 09:16 PM
Is this possible? With a high enough Use Magic Device check could a character use a spell that's of higher level than they can usually use? (e.g a 3rd-level bard using a 6th-level spell off a scroll?)

What about writing a spell into your spell/prayerbook that's higher-level than you can cast?





DM[F]R
To the first, yes. But you have to pass a UMD check, the second, no. Also there is no need to sign your name, we can see who you are.

shadow_archmagi
2010-04-10, 09:20 PM
Wait, what? I was pretty sure you COULD scribe higher level spells into your book, you just couldn't use them until it was time.

Optimystik
2010-04-10, 09:25 PM
Yes you can - UMD lets you cast from scrolls "as though the spell were on your class list." A character with that spell on his class list can indeed cast a higher-level spell from a scroll than they can cast naturally.

Note that while UMD allows you to emulate parameters like ability score, class features and alignment, it does not allow you to emulate a caster level. This could be interpreted to mean that a UMD-user without a caster level is at risk of a mishap. (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicItems/scrolls.htm)

So the process would be:

1) Identify scroll (via Spellcraft, party member etc.)
2) Make all relevant UMD checks to activate it (emulating parameters like ability scores and alignment where necessary.) If successful, go to 3.
3) Compare your CL to that of the scrolled spell. If yours is equal or greater, the spell casts normally. If not, go to 4.
4) Make a CL check (1d20 + your CL vs. DC = 1+CL of scroll.) If you succeed, the spell casts normally. If not, go to 5.
5) Make a DC 5 Wisdom check. If you succeed, the spell casts normally. If you fail, you incur a scroll mishap, as in the link above.

If I misread UMD in any way, someone else can chime in and correct me. I admit that I don't use it very often.

Scorpions__
2010-04-10, 09:35 PM
Yes you can - UMD lets you cast from scrolls "as though the spell were on your class list." A character with that spell on his class list can indeed cast a higher-level spell from a scroll than they can cast naturally.

Note that while UMD allows you to emulate parameters like ability score, class features and alignment, it does not allow you to emulate a caster level. This could be interpreted to mean that a UMD-user without a caster level is at risk of a mishap. (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicItems/scrolls.htm)

So the process would be:

1) Identify scroll (via Spellcraft, party member etc.)
2) Make all relevant UMD checks to activate it (emulating parameters like ability scores and alignment where necessary.) If successful, go to 3.
3) Compare your CL to that of the scrolled spell. If yours is equal or greater, the spell casts normally. If not, go to 4.
4) Make a CL check (1d20 + your CL vs. DC = 1+CL of scroll.) If you succeed, the spell casts normally. If not, go to 5.
5) Make a DC 5 Wisdom check. If you succeed, the spell casts normally. If you fail, you incur a scroll mishap, as in the link above.

If I misread UMD in any way, someone else can chime in and correct me. I admit that I don't use it very often.

The way I see it, if you fail the Caster Level check, the spell is wasted and you have to try to avoid a mishap, making the DC 5 Wisdom check doesn't make the spell succeed.




DM[F]R

Dornath
2010-04-10, 10:22 PM
I would agree with you Scorpions_.

Failing your CL check would indicate that you've botched something, whether it be in the verbal or somatic components (Flavour text for the DM to describe why the scroll failed) due to them being more complex than normal.

The DC5 Wisdom check to should be your PC trying to recognize that they've messed up and to avoid mispronouncing or gesturing even more so that the scroll backfires or screws up in some other way.

PhoenixRivers
2010-04-10, 10:32 PM
Note that while UMD allows you to emulate parameters like ability score, class features and alignment, it does not allow you to emulate a caster level. This could be interpreted to mean that a UMD-user without a caster level is at risk of a mishap. (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicItems/scrolls.htm)


Spellcasting is a Class feature of many classes.

For example: I, a level 7 rogue with a +25 to my UMD, decide to read a scroll, of a Paladin spell (Lesser Restoration).

It requires a wisdom score of 11 (which can be emulated):

Emulate an Ability Score

To cast a spell from a scroll, you need a high score in the appropriate ability (Intelligence for wizard spells, Wisdom for divine spells, or Charisma for sorcerer or bard spells). Your effective ability score (appropriate to the class youíre emulating when you try to cast the spell from the scroll) is your Use Magic Device check result minus 15. If you already have a high enough score in the appropriate ability, you donít need to make this check. So, DC 26 to emulate an intelligence of 11. Automatically passed.

Now, the rogue needs a caster level of 1.

Spellcasting is a class feature of a paladin. Emulate that class feature.
Emulate a Class Feature

Sometimes you need to use a class feature to activate a magic item. In this case, your effective level in the emulated class equals your Use Magic Device check result minus 20. This skill does not let you actually use the class feature of another class. It just lets you activate items as if you had that class feature. If the class whose feature you are emulating has an alignment requirement, you must meet it, either honestly or by emulating an appropriate alignment with a separate Use Magic Device check (see above). You need a Class level of 4 to have the requisite caster level, per the paladin's class ability description. Thus, you need a check result of 24. Automatically passed.

Thus, this rogue can use level 1 paladin scrolls (with a CL no higher than 3) automatically.

NEO|Phyte
2010-04-10, 11:19 PM
Spellcasting is a Class feature of many classes.

For example: I, a level 7 rogue with a +25 to my UMD, decide to read a scroll, of a Paladin spell (Lesser Restoration).

It requires a wisdom score of 11 (which can be emulated):
So, DC 26 to emulate an intelligence of 11. Automatically passed.

Now, the rogue needs a caster level of 1.

Spellcasting is a class feature of a paladin. Emulate that class feature. You need a Class level of 4 to have the requisite caster level, per the paladin's class ability description. Thus, you need a check result of 24. Automatically passed.

Thus, this rogue can use level 1 paladin scrolls (with a CL no higher than 3) automatically.

So, you're making a DC26 check and a DC24 check to cast this scroll through emulating stuff, when you could just make a DC 21 (assuming minimum caster level) check to cast the scroll through the cast a scroll use of UMD?
:edit: Looking closer, you'd still need to emulate the ability score, so the DC26 check stays.
Looking even closer, I think I see what's going on here, which makes UMD very silly.

QuantumSteve
2010-04-10, 11:39 PM
Spellcasting is a Class feature of many classes.

For example: I, a level 7 rogue with a +25 to my UMD, decide to read a scroll, of a Paladin spell (Lesser Restoration).

It requires a wisdom score of 11 (which can be emulated):
So, DC 26 to emulate an intelligence of 11. Automatically passed.

Now, the rogue needs a caster level of 1.

Spellcasting is a class feature of a paladin. Emulate that class feature. You need a Class level of 4 to have the requisite caster level, per the paladin's class ability description. Thus, you need a check result of 24. Automatically passed.

Thus, this rogue can use level 1 paladin scrolls (with a CL no higher than 3) automatically.

I don't think emulating a class feature is necessary/allowed for scrolls. Activating scrolls has a specific DC which your example doesn't use. That makes me believe there's something fishy with that interpretation of the rules.
Second, UMD never automatically succeeds. You always fail on a natural 1. Just sayin'.

Edit: Well, shoot. I could've sworn UMD was a unique auto-fail.

tyckspoon
2010-04-10, 11:40 PM
Second, UMD never automatically succeeds. You always fail on a natural 1. Just sayin'.

Skills don't auto-fail on 1. UMD just has special rules for certain situations if you happen to fail when rolling a 1.

Escheton
2010-04-11, 10:54 AM
this is exactly where umd is for
for making a rogue fill in the partymage place when needed and without one

Optimystik
2010-04-11, 11:56 AM
Ah, I missed the "effective level in the emulated class" clause. Yes, that would allow Rogues with UMD to have the same chances of reading a scroll as a Spellthief (assuming equal Cha and ranks of course.)

So, provided you successfully emulate the ability score and class feature, you won't need to worry about a scroll mishap.

Glimbur
2010-04-11, 02:16 PM
As an interesting aside, it's possible to, as a spellcaster, use a scroll of higher level than you can cast. Just make a CL check of DC (CL of scroll +1). This means sorcerers can pretend to cast spells at the same level wizards get them as long as they're willing to cast the spells off of scrolls. This is expensive.